Title

Mindfulness Meditation and the Reduction of Stress in Nursing Students

Graduation Date

5-2018

Document Type

Honors Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science

Department

Nursing

Director of the Honors Program

Gigi Gokcek, Ph.D.

First Reader

Luanne Linnard-Palmer, Ed.D., R.N.

Second Reader

Alicia Bright, Ed.D., C.N.S., R.N.

Abstract

Most college students feel overwhelmed trying to manage numerous obligations. They often prioritize academics at the expense of their physical and emotional well-being, resulting in consequences such as negative health outcomes (Ratanasiripong, Park, Ratanasiripong, & Kathalae, 2015). For nursing students, however, excessive stress may also affect their clinical performance, which negatively impacts their ability to deliver quality patient care (Song & Lindquist, 2015). Yet, previous research showed that mindfulness meditation resulted in lower stress, improved quality of life, and decreased physiological arousal (Chen et al., 2013; Song & Lindquist, 2015; Spadaro & Hunker, 2016; Burger & Lockhart, 2017; Guillaumie et al., 2017; McConville et al., 2017; Ratanasiripong et al., 2015; Shearer et al., 2016). Therefore, the purpose of this pilot study was to evaluate the effectiveness of mindfulness meditation on reports of stress in clinical baccalaureate nursing students. A quantitative study with a quasi-experimental design was conducted using a sample of three clinical nursing students at Dominican University of California. Participants practiced mindfulness meditation for at least once a week for four weeks for approximately 15 to 30 minutes and filled out a pre- and post-test survey. Compared with the average pre- and post-test stress scores, participants experienced a slight decrease in stress, indicating that mindfulness meditation can be used as a potential stress management intervention. More research is needed to investigate clinical and statistical significance.

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